TalkTalk shed a further 23,000 TV customers in the three months to the end of June, continuing a trend which has seen the low-cost service slip behind BT to become the smallest of the UK’s four pay-TV firms.
Like BT, TalkTalk’s TV service is based around the YouView platform which is able to carry a mix of free-to-air aerial and subscription internet-based channels within a single programme guide.
Both ISPs are partners in the YouView consortium and play a role in helping to develop new features and services.
Unlike BT, TalkTalk has a deal with Sky to offer the pay-TV giant’s suite of popular entertainment channels including Sky 1 and Sky Living.
However the availability of the channels and their hit content is not proving to be the draw TalkTalk had hoped and customers have been quitting the service in steady numbers over the past year.
Online forums and social media attract large numbers of complaints about the “slow” and “buggy” set top boxes TalkTalk supplies.
While both TalkTalk and BT use the same YouView platform, BT’s boxes are built to a higher specification than those issued by its rival.
Ahead of the service’s launch, a Talktalk spokesperson told SEENIT the company would be “the cheapest” outlet for YouView but complaints about its hardware suggest achieving that ambition has come at the expense of performance and user experience.
And although TalkTalk customers will soon be able to watch BT’s range of sports channels, they will need to pay BT for them directly, limiting any financial gain for TalkTalk.